jueves, 2 de febrero de 2017

La Chanson de Roland

La Chanson de Roland (GF Flammarion, 2004)
Anonymous [bilingual edition translated into modern French from the old French by Jean Dufournet]
France, ca. 1100

Since I think I'm finally up to the challenge of waging some sort of a longue durée survey of French and Francophone literature over the course of the year, I decided a reread of La Chanson de Roland [The Song of Roland] was really the only way to kick things off reading project-wise w/anything like the requisite amount of style demanded by our programming.  My geekly instincts, as it turns out, aren't always bad.  A few quick hits on matters of language, content and style.  1) Given the # of times I've suffered through various stilted English translations of the poem in the past, it was a real rush to read Jean Dufournet's modern French translation w/the original old French on the facing text.  Perhaps vivid battle poetry having to do with combatants' vows to render their swords "bright red with hot blood" [Dufournet: "nous les rendrons vermeilles de sang chaud"; original text: "Nus les feruns vermeilles de chald sanc"] (laisse 76) and descriptions of meadows full of flowers turned "bright red with the blood of our barons!" [Dufournet: "les fleurs/sont vermeilles du sang de nos barons !"; original: "les flors,/Ki sunt vermeilz del sanc de noz baronz !"] (laisse 205) to cite just two variations on a vermilion theme would convey a sense of urgency in any language even sans that exclamation point at the end of the latter verse; however, I'd maintain that Dufournet's rousing Roland has an unmistakable energy and flow to it even in its less blood-spattered moments.  2) As many of you no doubt know, La Chanson de Roland was at least partly inspired by a real life battle in the year 778 in which the rearguard of Charlemagne's army was ambushed by Basques at Ronceveaux Pass in the Pyrenees.  However, somewhere along the line Muslims from Spain replaced the Basques as the villains of the pro-French pseudo-historical epic that has come down to us.  In his introduction to the work, Dufournet speculates that the Roland poet was a learned cleric "tout imprégné de l'atmosphère de la croisade" ["imbued with the crusading spirit"] (19) whose authorship of the poem likely consisted in reshaping extant traditional material associated with Roland and converting it into something artistically unique and of its time--what the medievalist elsewhere hails as "le texte fondateur de notre histoire et de notre culture, en même temps que la première manifestation créatrice de notre langue" ["the foundational text of our history and culture and, at the same time, the first creative manifestation of our language"] (10).  Without getting into the nitty gritty of Dufournet's case for this, which would deserve a post or twelve of its own given the thorny literary and historical contexts under consideration, suffice it to say that one of the most convincing manifestations of a crusading ideology in the poem is its retrospective equation of the enemies of Charlemagne with the enemies of Christendom.  The Saracens, for example, are commonly referred to as félons ["traitors" or, in feudal terminology, "vassals disloyal to one's lord"], pagans, and as members of a "criminal race" [Dufournet: "la race criminelle"; original: "la gent criminel"] (laisse 179).  Beyond this, the figure of the Archbishop Turpin sends the Franks out to battle under the Urban II-like promise that "Si vous mourez, vous serez de saints martyrs" [original: "Se vos murez, esterez seinz martirs"; "If you die, you will become holy martyrs"] (laisse 89) and in a later scene on the sacking of Zaragoza we learn that both synagogues and mosques are destroyed at the hands of the revenge-minded Christians.  In fact, lest there be any doubt about whose side God is on in the holy war portrayed in the poem, the poet sings of miracles like the day God stopped the sun in the sky so that Charlemagne could pursue the vanquished pagans who had left the battlefield in flight and of one disgraced Muslim leader who literally surrenders his soul to demons at the moment of his death [Dufournet: "il rend son âme aux diables en personne"; original: "L'anme de lui as vifs diables dunet"] (laisse 264)--a colorful moment that!  Poetic matters aside, this demonization of the enemy and the exaltation of the Christian hordes from douce France will no doubt sound very familiar to anybody who's ever chanced to dip into the contemporary crusade chronicles.  3) On that note, one of the most interesting things about La Chanson de Roland to me from a style standpoint this time around and one in which I had either totally forgotten about or somehow not really noticed before was the evident tension between the Chanson as a consciously poetic product and the written documents that had supposedly preceded its gestation.  That is, La Chanson de Roland deliberately positions itself both as a type of metafictional song--the "mauvaise chanson" [bad song] that Roland tells Olivier won't be sung about their trusty swords so long as Durendal and Hauteclaire are allowed to perform their usual handiwork [Dufournet: "L'on ne doit pas sur elles chanter de mauvaise chanson"; original: "Male chançune n'en deit estre cantee"] (laisse 112)--and as an assonant chanson informed by prose precedents in lines like "Il est écrit dans l'ancienne chronique/que Charles convoqua des vassaux de nombreuses terres" [original: "Il est escrit en l'anciene geste/Que Carles mandet humes de plusurs teres"; "It is written in the old chronicle/that Charles summoned vassals from numerous lands"] (laisse 271).  Whether this appeal to written authority is real--i.e. if the poem is occasionally premised on historical sources that are now mostly lost to us--or just imagined for literary sakes hardly matters in the end; for when Roland encourages Olivier to strike their adversaries dead with great blows "pour qu'on ne chante pas sur nous de funeste chanson !" [original: "Que malvaise cançun de nus chantet ne seit !"; "so that a distressing song not be sung about us!"] (laisse 79), the impact is such that it's an impressive feat even to those who already know the heroes are doomed.  AOI.

First page of the Oxford manuscript of La Chanson de Roland

viernes, 20 de enero de 2017

El entenado

El entenado (Seix Barral, 2004)
por Juan José Saer
Francia, 1983

El entenado = una "novela histórica" falsa que en realidad es una fábula filosófica sobre la escritura y la memoria y una especie de mito de origen sobre la conquista española y el cosmos saeriano a la vez.  Amateur Reader (Tom) lo describe más sucintamente como "una novela de ideas hecho y derecho, subcategoría: lingüística y antropológica", lo que sin duda es mucho más útil.  En todo caso, se trata de las memorias, narradas 60 años después de los sucesos contados, de un grumete español que llega a las orillas del río Paraná como parte de una expedición del siglo XVI.  El único superviviente de un ataque por los indios, el muchacho pasa diez años entre la tribu colastiné donde presencia el comer de sus camaradas de a bordo durante una orgía antropófoga y más tarde funciona como un testigo al estilo de vida y a las preocupaciones metafísicas de los indios.  Aunque sería comprensible si los temas del choque de culturas y en particular el canibalismo tomarían el centro del escenario en los recuerdos del narrador, después de su regreso a España y unas peripecias más bien pícarescas lo que se preocupa a él en su vejez es algo enteramente distinto.  En breve, quiere entender los indios como hombres en vez de salvajes y quiere saber el propósito de su vida.  Él explica, por ejemplo, que "yo crecí con ellos, y puedo decir que, con los años, al horror y a la repugnancia que me inspiraron al principio los fue reemplazando la compasión.  Esa intemperie que los maltrataba, hecha de hambre, lluvias, frío, sequía, inundaciones, enfermadades y muerte, estaba adentro de una más grande, que los gobernaba con un rigor propio y sin medida, contra el que no tenían defensa, ya que por estar oculta no podían construir, como con la otra, armas o abrigos que la atenuaran" (101).  Más tarde, acordándose de las palabras no entendidas Def-ghi, def-ghi usadas reiteradamente por los indios. él añade que, "después de largas reflexiones, deduje que si me habían dado ese nombre, era porque me hacían compartir, con todo lo otro que llamaban de la misma manera, alguna esencia solidaria.  De mí esperaban que duplicara, como el agua, la imagen que daban de sí mismos, que repitiera sus gestos y palabras, que los representara en su ausencia y que fuese capaz, cuando me devolvieran a mis semejantes, de hacer como el espía o el adelantado que, por haber sido testigo de algo que el resto de la tribu todavía no había visto, pudiese volver sobre sus pasos para contárselo en detalle a todos.  Amenazados por todo eso que nos rige desde lo oscuro, manteniéndonos en el aire abierto hasta que un buen día, con un gesto súbito y caprichoso, nos devuelve a lo indistinto, querían que de su pasaje por ese espejismo material quedase un testigo y un sobreviviente que fuese, ante el mundo, su narrador" (162-163).  Dentro de un libro en cual el narrador ya había dicho que aprendiendo a leer y escribir constituyó "el único acto que podía justificar mi vida" (120), hay algo agridulce en esta meditación sobre el impulso de narrar y de rememorar.

Juan José Saer (1937-2005)

jueves, 12 de enero de 2017

Los mares del Sur

Los mares del Sur (Booket, 2016)
by Manuel Vázquez Montalbán
Spain, 1979

My favorite detective can beat up your favorite detective, got it?  Ace crime caper, situated in late 1970s Barcelona around the dawn of the democratic transition and hence long before the then gritty city was gussied up for the 1992 Summer Olympics, in which the mysterious disappearance--subsequently discovered to be a gruesome murder--of a rich Catalan industrialist and real estate developer leads private detective Pepe Carvalho down a Chandleresque rabbit warren filled with knife-wielding proles and equally cutthroat white collar criminals.  Really enjoyed this punchy, page-turning introduction to the world of Vázquez Montalbán.  Pepe Carvalho, a 40-something foodie, ex-con and former bibliophile who feeds his fireplace with texts from his 2,000 volume personal library since all books are "una chorrada" ["useless clutter"] (27), is an amusing enough center of attention throughout, and Vázquez Montalbán generously seasons the whodunit aspects of his smart and witty story with humor bookish (a send-up of a debate about the origins of the hardboiled novel! in-jokes about Juan Marsé!!) and earthy (a reflection on the advances in "márketing puteril," or streetwalkers' hustling, occasioned by a non-touristy walk down las Ramblas) (90) before the ending shows he's not just fucking around for laughs.  In its world-weary evocation of a troubled time and place, a not unworthy kindred spirit to the likes of Cela's La colmena and Polanski's Chinatown.

Manuel Vázquez Montalbán (1939-2003) y amigos

Muchísimas gracias to Paul of By the Firelight for his juicy review of Los mares del Sur [Southern Seas*] here.

*A Gauguin allusion embedded in the title begs the question why the English translation isn't The South Seas rather than the meaningless and nondescript Southern Seas, but go figure.

miércoles, 4 de enero de 2017

2016 Top 12

Svetlana Alexievich's Voices from Chernobyl: The Oral History of a Nuclear Disaster (Belarus, 1997)
 
 Charles Baudelaire's The Flowers of Evil (France, 1857 & 1861)

Albert Camus' La peste (French Algeria, 1947)
 
Antonio Di Benedetto's Zama (Argentina, 1956)

William Faulkner's The Sound and the Fury (USA, 1929)

Mouloud Feraoun's Journal.  1955-1962 (Algeria/French Algeria, 1962)
 
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's Faust.  A Tragedy (Germany, 1808 & 1832)
 
Ryszard Kapuściński's Un día más con vida (Poland, 1976 & 2000)
 
John le Carré's The Honourable Schoolboy (England, 1977)

J.M.G. Le Clézio's Le chercheur d'or (France, 1985)

Juan Carlos Onetti's Dejemos hablar al viento (Uruguay, 1979)

Richard Overy's Russia's War (England, 1997)
 
Honorable Mention
Patrick Leigh Fermor's Between the Woods and the Water (England, 1986); Yuri Herrera's Señales que precederán al fin del mundo (Mexico, 2009); Sergio Pitol's El mago de Viena (Mexico, 2005); Juan Villoro's Dios es redondo (Mexico, 2006).

*in alphabetical order by author [en orden alfabético por autor]*

sábado, 10 de diciembre de 2016

A Coffin for Dimitrios

A Coffin for Dimitrios (Vintage Crime/Black Lizard, 2001)
by Eric Ambler
England, 1939

OK, so where were we?  Old-fashioned but super entertaining vintage thrilla (original UK title: The Mask of Dimitrios) in which a chance encounter with the head of the Turkish secret police at a dinner party in Istanbul in 1938 launches overly inquisitive one-time academic turned roman policier scribbler Charles Latimer out on his very own page-turner of an odyssey with stops in Smyrna, Athens, Sofia, Geneva, and the City of Light in search of the back story of a slippery Greek assassin named Dimitrios.  Sort of a true crime Baedeker's if you will--but one in which it doesn't take long for the first pistol to be waved in the desk jockey Latimer's face.  On the plus side, Ambler knows how to bump up the sensation novel aspects of his story with both the attention-grabbing "literary" soundbite ("Hope had come and gone, a fugitive in the scented bosom of illusion" [33]) and a good deal of meta allusion-mongering slyly poking fun at the literati tendencies of the earnest Latimer ("The situation in which a person, imagining fondly that he is in charge of his own destiny, is, in fact, the sport of circumstances beyond his control, is always fascinating.  It is the essential element in most good theatre from the Oedipus of Sophocles to East Lynne" [56]).  Sophocles and Ellen Wood!  On the minus side, my only real complaint and a relatively minor one at that is that the protagonist comes off as a little too wholesome for the unsavory nature of his adventures.  Of course, anybody pondering just how old-fashioned and wholesome things could be here may wonder WTF I'm talking about when you get to all the lowlife bits about Balkan brothels and white slavery, coke and heroin smuggling, political assassinations, pre-WWII genocide and the like.  In short, a juicy genre bonbon for your holiday reading sampler.

Eric Ambler (1909-1998)

lunes, 5 de septiembre de 2016

Spanish Lit Month 2016: All July and August Links


Muchísimas gracias to Stu of Winstonsdad's Blog, our genial co-host for Spanish Lit Month 2016 and of course the founder of the event way back in 2012, as well as to everybody else who read and wrote along with us this summer.  Judging by the ungodly amount of time it took to collate all the July and August links below (note: a few links falling outside of the official event calendar but included here anyway are marked with a pedantic and telltale *), SLM 2016 was an absolutely smashing success in terms of all the Spanish & Basque & Catalan & Galician language literature enjoyed.  Please read on to the end of the post for a chance to see what SLM 2016 participants Amateur Reader (Tom) and Rise have to say about some of their Spanish-language favorites--and until it's time for the next Spanish Lit Month to rock/roll around, hope you enjoy all these freakin' links!

Amanda, Simpler Pastimes
Pedro Páramo by Juan Rulfo

Amateur Reader (Tom), Wuthering Expectations
Annabel Gaskell, Annabookbel
Third Reich by Roberto Bolaño

Bellezza, Dolce Bellezza
The Angel's Game by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

David Hebblethwaite, David's Book World
The Skating Rink by Roberto Bolaño
The Transmigration of Bodies: ii- networks and conversations by Yuri Herrera
Traces of Sandalwood by Asha Miró & Anna Soler-Pont
Never Any End to Paris by Enrique Vila-Matas

Emma, Book Around the Corner
Exemplary Crimes by Max Aub
Tango for a Torturer by Daniel Chavarría

Grant, 1streading's Blog
The House of Ulloa by Emilia Pardo Bazán
Quesadillas by Juan Pablo Villalobos
Affections by Rodrigo Hasbún
The She-Devil in the Mirror by Horacio Castellanos Moya
Umami by Laia Jufresa
The Buenos Aires Affair by Manuel Puig
Mildew by Paulette Jonguitud

JacquiWine, JacquiWine's Journal
The House of Ulloa by Emilia Pardo Bazán

Joe, roughghosts
Poets, artists and other lost souls: Last Evenings on Earth by Roberto Bolaño
Homecoming - Revulsion: Thomas Bernhard in San Salvador by Horacio Castellanos Moya
In the Shadow of Civil War: Review of Black Bread by Emili Teixidor
Black Bread: Novel Excerpt - Emili Teixidor

John, The Modern Novel
La magnitud de la tragèdia (The Enormity of the Tragedy) by Quim Monzó
Miguel Gutiérrez Dies
La casa de la laguna (The House on the Lagoon) by Rosario Ferré
Campo abierto [Open Field] by Max Aub
Los afectos (Affections) by Rodrigo Hasbún
Benzina (Gasoline) by Quim Monzó
Campo de sangre [Field of Blood] by Max Aub

Julianne Pachico, Never Stop Reading
Two Story Collections
(on Juan Gabriel Vásquez's Lovers on All Saints' Day and one other title)
Rereading One Hundred Years of Solitude
Feast of the Innocents by Evelio Rosero

lizzysiddal, Lizzy's Literary Life
#spanishlitmonth - Reading Notes

Mandy, peakreads
I'll Sell You a Dog by Juan Pablo Villalobos*
a plague on both your houses: The Transmigration of Bodies by Yuri Herrera translated by Lisa Dillman published by And Other Stories

Melissa Beck, The Book Binder's Daughter
I'll Sell You a Dog by Juan Pablo Villalobos
The Clouds by Juan José Saer
The Plimsoll Line by Juan Gracia Armendáriz
Blitz by David Trueba
Zama by Antonio Di Benedetto

Nicole, bibliographing
Fever, infatuation, and Colonel Chabert*
(on Your Face Tomorrow and The Infatuations by Javier Marías)
"People whose consciences torment them are the exception"
(on Your Face Tomorrow by Javier Marías)

Obooki, Obooki's Obloquy
Time of Silence by Luis Martín-Santos

Pat, South of Paris Books
Kiss of the Spider Woman by Manuel Puig
The Night by Rodrigo Blanco Calderón
None So Blind by J.Á. González Sainz
Une femme suspendue by Lorenzo Silva

Richard, Caravana de recuerdos
La última niebla by María Luisa Bombal
Kid Ñandubay by Bernardo Kordon
Hijo de hombre by Augusto Roa Bastos
Lituma en los Andes by Mario Vargas Llosa
Nombre falso by Ricardo Piglia
La oscura historia de la prima Montse by Juan Marsé
Las genealogías by Margo Glantz
La amortajada by María Luisa Bombal

Rise, in lieu of a field guide
La memoria de Shakespeare
(on "Shakespeare's Memory" by Jorge Luis Borges)
The horrible noise of struggles: Two works of fiction by Pedro Paterno
(on The Pact of Biyak-na-Bato and Nínay by Pedro Paterno)
Unforeseen Shadows: Nínay by Pedro Paterno

Scott G.F. Bailey, six words for a hat
Divine Madness: la idiota en casa y iglesia, by Leopoldo Alas
(on La Regenta by Leopoldo Alas)

Séamus, Vapour Trails
Tres by Roberto Bolaño
The Literary Conference & An Episode in the Life of a Landscape Painter by César Aira

Simon Lavery, Tredynas Days
A cold and calculating egotism: La Regenta, by Leopoldo Alas
Seduce her for me: Ana's fate sealed in La Regenta 

Stu, Winstonsdad's Blog
The Sky Over Lima by Juan Gómez Bárcena
One Million Cows by Manuel Rivas
The Lone Man by Bernardo Atxaga
Affections by Rodrigo Hasbún
The Body Where I Was Born by Guadalupe Nettel
The Winterlings by Cristina Sánchez-Andrade
An Episode in the Life of a Landscape Painter by César Aira
On the Edge by Rafael Chirbes
Wakolda by Lucía Puenzo

Tony, Tony's Reading List
Umami by Laia Jufresa
God Is Round by Juan Villoro
Vicious by Xurxo Borrazás
The Body Where I Was Born by Guadalupe Nettel
The Transmigration of Bodies by Yuri Herrera
Death in Spring by Mercè Rodoreda
Como agua para chocolate (Like Water for Chocolate) by Laura Esquivel
Affections by Rodrigo Hasbún*

Tony Messenger, Messengers Booker (and more)
The Large Glass by Mario Bellatin
Distant Star by Roberto Bolaño
Seeing Red by Lina Meruane
My Documents by Alejandro Zambra
Sun, Stone, and Shadows: 20 Great Mexican Short Stories edited by Jorge F. Hernández
The Youngest Doll by Rosario Ferré
Multiple Choice by Alejandro Zambra
Custody of the Eyes by Diamela Eltit
Underground River and Other Stories by Inés Arredondo
Natural Histories by Guadalupe Nettel
Umami by Laia Jufresa
Ten Women by Marcela Serrano
The Rest Is Silence by Carla Guelfenbein

Bonus: Meet the Readers
As sometimes happens around here, I had an OK idea last year that I failed to execute on in either Spanish Lit Month 2015 or Spanish Lit Month 2016.  That being said, I'm rather sure you'll enjoy these Spanish Lit Month "introductions" to Amateur Reader (Tom) of Wuthering Expectations and Rise of in lieu of a field guide thanks to those two and no thanks at all to me.  My questions/comments are in italics; their answers aren't.  Thanks, of course, to Tom and Rise for humoring me even as their responses marinated for well over a year!

Amateur Reader (Tom), Wuthering Expectations
 1) What's the first Spanish-language work that you remember really grabbing your attention as a a reader?
Don Quixote (1605/1615), which I read in high school as a comic adventure story and soon after in college as the first postmodern novel.  Subsequent reading has shown that it is many other things as well.
2) What are three of your all-time favorite Spanish-language works?
Don Quixote; Ficciones (1945); One Hundred Years of Solitude (1967).  A logical chain of books.
 3) What's a criminally overlooked Spanish-language author or work that you would like to recommend to other readers?
The entire body of medieval and early modern Spanish literature aside from Don Quixote is overlooked by English-language readers.  It is so rich, and so readable.  For a single work, I will pick Life Is a Dream (1635) by Pedro Calderón de la Barca, which is as good as Shakespeare.
Please select one favorite post on a Spanish-language author or topic from the Wuthering Expectations archives.

Rise, in lieu of a field guide
 1)  What's the first Spanish-language work that you remember really grabbing your attention as a a reader?
The Savage Detectives freed me from a lot of things and inspired me to start writing about books. 
2) What are three of your all-time favorite Spanish-language works?
The Oleza novels (Our Father San Daniel and The Leprous Bishop) by Gabriel Miró, trans. Marlon James Sales, is at surface a story of clerics in a backward village.  But its secrets and undercurrents describe the complex negotiations and painful compromises in this secular world.
Labyrinths by Jorge Luis Borges (eds. Donald A. Yates and James E. Irby) is a surfeit of ideas, constructed and reconstructed, in a loopy adventure of reflecting mirrors and mazes and doubles.
Dark Back of Time, among the dense, atmospheric novels by Javier Marías, is an unstructured, memory-soaked investigation into the art of metafiction.
3) What's a criminally overlooked Spanish-language author or work that you would like to recommend to other readers?
El Folk-Lore Filipino (1889) by Isabelo de los Reyes is hard to classify in terms of genre.  It may be a "folklore novel" and perhaps an early instance of the encyclopedia novel.  It is revisionary and revolutionary in intent, a compendium of local fables, customs, and traditions set off against Spanish colonialism.  More than a sociological and cultural curiosity, it is a compendium of worldview.  The first of two volumes of this classic work in Spanish is translated by Salud C. Dizon and Maria Elinora Peralta-Imson and is published in 1994 by University of the Philippines Press.
Please select one favorite post on a Spanish-language author or topic from the in lieu of a field guide archives.
I think my multiple posts on the Quixote and Quixote-like novels allowed me to reflect on the nature of fictional reality and deepened my understanding of the novel.  The translation by John Rutherford is superb.
One of my favorite posts from Rise: A cosmogony of Javier Marías's major fiction.

miércoles, 31 de agosto de 2016

La amortajada

La amortajada (Editorial Andrés Bello, 1996)
por María Luisa Bombal
Argentina, 1938

Ana María, como la narradora en La última niebla de Bombal, es una esposa infeliz.  "Oh, la tortura del primer amor, de la primera desilusión!  ¡Cuando se lucha con el pasado, en lugar de olvidarlo!" ella grita -en un modo de hablar- dentro de un monólogo interior telenovelesco (107).  A diferencia de la otra narradora, Ana María, "la amortajada" del título, está muerta.  Con la ayuda de otro/a narrador/a en tercera persona, la novelita sigue los pensamientos y remordimientos del personaje mientras que ella espera el cortejo fúnebre que la llevará a la cripta familiar.  Qué gótico, ¿no?  Además del truco con la narradora muerta, Bombal trabaja duro para mantener el interés del lector.  Aunque el relato tiene un lado "filosófico" (pregunta: "¿Era preciso morir para saber ciertas cosas?" [116]), lo que me gustaba más era el ambiente inquietante de una obra que habla de "las dulces culebras" de la muerte (160) y versa sobre la tumba con tal extrañeza extravagante y/o feminista como esto (166):

Hay pobres mujeres enterradas, perdidas en cementerios inmensos como ciudades -y horror- hasta con calles asfaltadas.  Y en los lechos de ciertos ríos de aguas negras las hay suicidas que las corrientes incesantemente golpean, roen, desfiguran y golpean.  Y hay niñas, recién sepultas, a quienes deudos inquietos por encontrar, a su vez, espacio libre, en una cripta estrecha y sombría, reducen y reducen deseosos casi hasta de borrarlas del mundo de los huesos.  Y hay también jóvenes adúlteras que imprudentes citas atraen a barrios apartados y que un anónimo hace sorprender y recostar de un balazo sobre el pecho del amante, y cuyos cuerpos, profanados por las autopsias, se abandonan, días y días, a la infamia de la morgue.
¡Oh, Dios mío, insensatos hay que dicen que una vez muertos no debe preocuparnos nuestro cuerpo!


La amortajada, publicada por primera vez en 1938 por Editorial Sur en Buenos Aires, se puede encontrar en las páginas 96-176 de las Obras completas de la chilena Bombal (1910-1980, arriba) compilada por Lucía Guerra (Santiago de Chile: Editorial André Bello, 1996).